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'''Joseph Stalin''' (;[ "Stalin"]. ''Random House Webster's Unabridged Dictionary''. birth surname: '''Jughashvili'''; 18 December 1878 – 5 March 1953) was the leader of the Soviet Union from the mid-1920s until his death in 1953. Holding the post of the General Secretary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union|General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, he was effectively the dictator of the state. Stalin was one of the seven members of the first Politburo, founded in 1917 in order to manage the Bolshevik Revolution, alongside Vladimir Lenin|Lenin, Grigory Zinoviev|Zinoviev, Kamenev, Trotsky, Sokolnikov and Andrei Bubnov|Bubnov.Dmitri Volkogonov, ''Lenin. A New Biography'', translated and edited by Harold Shukman (New York: The Free Press, 1994), p. 185. Among the...
Pages30–2 | title = Soviet Industrialization Reconsidered: Some Preliminary Conclusions about Economic Development between 1926 and 1941 | publisher=Economic History Review | year = 1986 | url = | isbn = 978-0-7190-4600-1| volume = 39 | issue = 2 }} However, the economic changes coincided with the imprisonment of millions of people in Gulag labour camps.{{cite journal|author=Getty, Rittersporn, Zemskov|title=Victims of the Soviet Penal System in the Pre-War Years: A First Approach on the Basis of Archival Evidence|url=|jstor=2166597 |journal= The American Historical Review|volume= 98|issue=4 |year= 1993|pages=1017–1049|doi=10.2307/2166597}} The initial upheaval in agriculture disrupted food production and contributed to the catastrophic Soviet famine of 1932–33, known in Ukraine as the Holodomor. Between 1934 and 1939 he organized and led a massive purge (known as "Great Purge") of the party, government, armed forces and intelligentsia, in which millions of so-called "enemies of the working class" were imprisoned, exiled or executed, often extrajudicial punishment|without due process. Major figures in the Communist Party and government, and many Red Army high commanders, were killed after being convicted of treason in show trials.Gleason, Abbott (2009). ''[ A Companion to Russian History]''. Wiley-Blackwell. p. 373. ISBN 1-4051-3560-3
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